Interesting quotes from Adam Werbach (the green activist turned Wal-Mart sustainability adviser) in an interview he did with us the other day.
“The number of CSR people who are respected by the CEO as one of the up and coming future leaders of the company, someone who is expected to become a future CEO, is one in a hundred – maybe one in a thousand.”
“In my experience, most CSR people cannot answer the question: how does your company make money and how do you connect to that? They’re much more about license to grow, risk mitigation and corporate reputation than they are about core business strategy – how you sell more stuff and save money, to make more money to keep doing it.”
“The majority of CSR work is non-strategic. It doesn’t actually build bottom line or top line profits”…
“The truth is there’s a lot of great people in CSR doing the right thing. It’s an amazing group of people. My challenge is a lot of them were outsiders who are now insiders and they are very vested in their roles. The biggest barrier [to embedding CSR], to be honest, is frequently the CSR people. I find myself in the place I’m working and I freeze them out of corporate conversation because they are stopping the change the CFO or CEO wants to make.”
Does this ring true with you?
The interview will be published in our joint July/August edition.
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